Cardinal Sean Brady, who is due to offer his resignation as the Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, when he turns 75 on Saturday – as is necessary under canon law.
Cardinal Sean Brady secretly interviewed victims of the late Fr Brendan Smyth in 1975, including Brendan Boland, then aged 14, and never told the authorities of what the victims, including Mr Boland, said.
Cardinal Brady also never told the parents of other children who were being abused, the names and addresses of whom were given to Cardinal Brady by Mr Boland. Smyth went on to abuse at least one of those children, and many others.
In yesterday’s Sunday Times, Justine McCarthy wrote about Cardinal Brady’s pending resignation, saying:
“An unspoken gentlemen’s agreement among Ireland’s establishment that Brady be allowed to glide serenely off centre stage is a kick in the stomach for survivors, especially for those who, as children, were raped and molested by the late Fr Brendan Smyth.”
Ms McCarthy also wrote how Cardinal Brady recently confirmed to the Sunday Times that he never cooperated with the Garda investigation into Smyth, which led to Smyth being jailed in 1997, and that, indeed, he didn’t even know about it.
Why did he not know? Was he on Mars? How else did he escape the wall-to-wall news in November 1994 that the Irish government [led by Albert Reynolds] had collapsed following a controversy sparked by a UTV documentary over the state’s failure to extradite Smyth to Northern Ireland, where he had been arrested and bailed on child sexual abuse charges? A month after the government fell, Brady was appointed coadjutor archbishop of Armagh, making him the heir apparent as the doyen of the Irish church. The following year, two other priests who were present when Brady co-signed an oath of secrecy by Brendan Boland, aged 14, were interviewed by gardai investigating Smyth. One of those priests was Monsignor Francis Donnelly, a priest of the Armagh archdiocese. Did Donnelly never mention his garda interview to his boss and fellow inquisitor Brady?
Sunday Times article unavailable online.